USD men defeat Minnesota State 82-78 The South Dakota men's basketball team (16-7, 5-5 NCC) notched a 82-78 victory over Minnesota State (16-7, 5-5 NCC) Saturday night in front of 3,284 fans at Bresnan Arena in Mankato, MN. USD has now won six out its last seven games.
Senior forward Derek Paben recorded a season-high for the second consecutive night with 26 points and five rebounds. The Pickrell, NE, native hit 6-of-10 3-pointers on the night.
Sophomore forward Turner Trofholz (Schuyler, NE) had 19 points and nine rebounds, while senior forward Tommie King (Seattle, WA) added 17 points and four rebounds. Junior guard Josh Mueller (Hartford) was the fourth Coyote in double figures with 13 points and six assists.
USD got off to a slow start to open the game, falling behind 17-5 over the first six minutes of action. The Mavericks extended their lead to as many as 13 points in the first half and held a 33-20 lead, before the Coyotes went on a 13-2 run to pull within two at 35-33. After Minnesota State scored the next three points, a 3-pointer by Mueller with 0.6 remaining in the first half pulled the Coyotes back within two at 38-36.
The Coyotes were able to open up an 11-point lead early on in the second half thanks to an 11-2 run that put USD up 56-45 with 13:45 to play. South Dakota maintained an 11-point advantage until an 11-1 run by the Mavericks cut the Coyote lead to 67-66 with 4:50 on the clock.
USD responded with a 9-4 spurt to go back up by six at 76-70 with 1:43 to play, before MSU scored 4 quick points to pull within two at 76-74 with 42 seconds to play.
Junior center Steve Anderson (Rapid City) was sent to the free-throw line with 27.3 seconds to play, hitting both attempts to push the USD lead back to 4 at 78-74. Following a pair of free throws by Gameli Ahelegbe, Paben knocked down a pair of freebies to increase the South Dakota lead back to 4 at 80-76 with 17.4 on the clock.
Ahelegbe went back to the line for MSU with 8.3 to play and hit both to pull the Mavericks back within 2, 80-78. With 7.6 on the clock, Paben iced the game with two more free throws, as the Coyotes went on to the 82-78 victory.
As a team, USD shot 43.1 percent from the field (28-of-65) and hit 10-of-27 from the 3-point line (37.0 percent). Minnesota State hit 41.2 percent from the floor (28-of-67) and just 27.8 percent at 3-point line (5-of-18). The Mavericks won the battle of the boards, 45-36.
South Dakota returns home to close out the regular season with four consecutive home games, starting with a 6 p.m. tilt against North Dakota State on Friday, Feb. 20, at the DakotaDome.